In Colorado there are strong expectations no matter what the sport. Coloradans understand that our pro teams are playing for pride. As Coloradans we’re landlocked and often find ourselves left out of the sports world. If you’re a coach you’re expected to be at minimum; COMPETITIVE. Winning Championships does not guarantee that your job is safe. Two examples are Bob Hartley and Mike Shanahan. Both of these coaches won championships and were let go. I have hard time dealing with Rapids fans that don’t understand this culture and were in shock when Gary Smith contract wasn’t renewed.
I agree with the management staff that Gary Smith is not the future of the Rapids organization. I think there is more to the story then just disagreements about what the roster should look like. I agree and fully support that the Rapids organization letting go of Gary Smith. He was not the future of the club. I understand that he won a cup with the team but the Rapids had a weak path to the championship. Gary Smith brought an English grind-down style of soccer to Colorado. That style is successful against teams that are as good or little worse than you. This style also puts fans to sleep. Coloradans are tough mob to impress and explains why our fan base is one of the lowest averages in the MLS. This style brings inconsistency to games. This inconsistency explains why the Rapids barely make the playoffs every year. . Gary Smith has history with clubs in the English Premiere system and should understand that if you can’t beat the big clubs in the league and crush the inferior ones that you have no business being a coach. The Rapids rarely looked competitive against the MLS most consistent clubs LA and Salt Lake.
The Rapids did have to deal with a long list of injuries throughout the season and Gary Smith making excuses was embarrassing. Even with the list of injuries, the Rapids still were able to put out a competitive team on the field night in and night including champion league matches. Gary Smith had an onslaught of talent, which was wasted in the end. I don’t understand how u have speed demons and u can’t find ways to put them in successful positions. I don’t understand how u let a powerhouse wrecking ball forward like Connor Casey, turn into a gutter trash “Prima Donna.” There was no player management under his reign. How does a coach say the same thing over and over at half time about his team when they are losing? Gary would always use the same excuse why they looked like crap,” They’re making a lot of strange choices.” “Strange” choices, you’re the coach, do you not have practices to fix these so called choices?
I have thrown jabs at Gary but he will always be the first coach to win a title for Colorado. I do wish him the best on where he decides to coach next. As a Coloradoan sometimes you got to say, “No matter how much you like a coach, they can still be wrong for the team.”